Canadian fans of Chelsea Manning might not get the chance to meet her anytime soon. Manning turned to Twitter on Monday morning to say that she was not allowed to cross the Canadian border.
The Guardian reports that Manning was heading to Canada on Friday to begin a bi-coastal tour from New York to Montreal, then to Vancouver, before visiting the University of California Berkeley to protest Milo Yiannopoulos’s speech. But when Manning attempted to enter the country, she was denied entry and held overnight before finally being turned away.
“so, i guess canada has permanently banned me?” Manning tweeted. “[IRCC] denied entry b/c of convictions similar to ‘treason’ offense.”
Manning posted a report on Monday, originally directed from an unknown source to Canada’s Minister of Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship, which reveals that she was considered a foreign national who is “inadmissible on grounds of serious criminality.” According to the report, Manning was convicted of a U.S. offense that “would equate to an indictable offence, namely Treason” in Canada. Reuters has since reported that Manning is hiring a Canadian lawyer to challenge her denial of entry in court, although she reportedly does not yet have a date set to appeal Canada’s decision.
Manning has since turned to Twitter to condemn political borders, prisons, and deportations, putting forward the progressive notion that the world would be better without state-imposed borders.
In 2013, Manning was tried and convicted under the U.S. Espionage Act, a severe anti-spying act that isn’t equivalent to treason under U.S. law. It remains unclear if other countries will turn away Chelsea Manning, prompting concern that the progressive activist may not be able to give public talks currently planned throughout the world. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau declined to comment on Manning’s situation when asked by members of the press on Monday, although the Guardian reports that he is interested in hearing more in the future.